One of the major disappointments with the Wii — until MotionPlus comes out — is that sword fighting on it isn’t 1-to-1. It made Red Steel even worse than it already was and it kept us from the type of Star Wars game we’ve always been dreaming of. However, it appears that Sony might be beating the Big N to the punch or at least going till the last round. At the Edinburgh Interactive Festival, a representative from Sony’s London Studios talked a little about a new game for the EyeToy called Hero that would present PS3 owners a chance to play some 1-to-1 motion detection sword fighting. It will also be the first game for the EyeToy that isn’t a crappy collection of mini-games or a card game by having a plot tying together the entire game.
Attendees at the presentation, after sitting through an opening talk about how Sony came up with casual gaming way before Nintendo did, saw a few of the opening levels of the first-person game including a battle with a black night. Players will use a green foam sword that the EyeToy will recognize via its new color-specific color detecting technology. If you ever felt silly with a Wii remote, it sounds like you should prepare to feel even dumber shaking this thing around. The demonstration showed off how the sword runs in perfect 1:1 ratio thanks to the camera, and the levels involved blocking things being thrown at the hero and using the sword to illuminate dark passages.
So far I’m immensely uninterested as this seems like just another “me too” effort in Sony and Microsoft’s grabs at the new market the Wii has opened up. While the game definitely looks like the most expansive and impressive EyeToy game out there, that’s hardly saying anything seeing as the other 18 games, other than Eye of Judgment, have been shallower than a cheerleader on prom night. Plus, thanks to the way the EyeToy works, the detection is only in two dimensions, and I’m guessing it will still suffer from many of the problems in color detection that previous EyeToy games did.
I’m hoping I’m wrong though as I think the EyeToy is one of the most underused and creative game peripherals ever released. We’ll just have to wait and see when the game hopefully ships this holiday season.